History of Relations | Diplomatic Representation | Travel Info | Health Requirements | Climate Info | Currency Info | Trade Info | Visits and Meetings | Agreements | Interest Groups/ Organisations

History of Relations

Relations between South Africa and Mozambique have their historic origin as far back as 1928 when South Africa and Portugal entered into a Convention which regulated labour; transport and commercial matters between South Africa and the colony of Mozambique.

South Africa's mines have over many decades employed substantial numbers of miners of Mozambican origin, resulting in the repatriation of deferred payment of salaries, which formed a valuable source of income for the Mozambican economy.

Since the advent of democracy in South Africa in 1994 and peace in Mozambique, South Africa and Mozambique have strengthened their relations in especially the area of economic cooperation and investment. This cooperation resulted in the implementation of multi-billion rand economic projects, inter alia, the Maputo Development Corridor and the trilateral Spatial Development Initiative with Swaziland.

The Governments of South Africa and Mozambique on 20 July 1994 entered into the Agreement for a Joint Permanent Commission for Cooperation, thereby providing the mechanism for further cooperation.

A Heads of State Economic Bilateral Forum was created in 1997. These meetings are held quarterly under the chairmanship the Presidents of South Africa and Mozambique and attended by the ministers and officials of relevant ministries of both countries. The Heads of State Economic Bilateral presides over strategic projects between the two countries.

Given the importance of Mozambique in view of President TM Mbeki's African Renaissance initiatives, various Presidential, Ministerial and Official meetings are taking place on a continuous basis.

The Land

The Republic of Mozambique covers a total area of 799 380 sq km (308 641 sq miles), which includes 13 000 sq km of inland water, representing the Mozambican section of Lake Malawi. Mozambique is bordered to the north by Tanzania, to the west by Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe and to the south by South Africa and Swaziland.

The shoreline is 2470 km long and generally sandy and bordered by lagoons and strings of coastal islets in the north.

Mozambique has 25 main rivers, all of which flow to the Indian Ocean. The largest and most historically significant is the Zambezi, whose 820 km Mozambican section is navigable for 460 km.


Mozambique has a population of 18,6 million (1998) citizens with an estimated population growth rate of 2.5% (1998) and an approximate birth rate of 43.5 births/1000 population (1998). Life expectation for the total population is approximately 45 years.

The population is ethnically composed of indigenous tribal groups 99% (Shangaan; Chokwe; Manyika; Sena; Makua and others), as well as Europeans 0.6%; mixed race 0.2% and Indians 0.08%. Portuguese is the official language.

Approximately 36% of the population is urbanised (1997), with a literacy rate of approximately 40%. The country has a GDP of approximately 8% (1997) and comprises 10 provinces. The capital city is Maputo.

Mozambique achieved independence from Portugal on 25 June 1975 and elected Samora Machel (Frelimo) as its first President. Soon after independence, a protracted civil war broke out between the governing party, Frelimo, and Renamo, the Mozambique resistance forces. President Machel was succeeded in 1986 by President Joaquim Alberto Chissano as President, following the death of the former in an aircraft disaster.

Following the cessation of the civil war, the country's new Constitution was adopted on 30 November 1990 and the General Peace Agreement was signed on 4 October 1992 between Frelimo and Renamo.

President Chissano is Head of State, whilst Prime Minister Pascoal Mocumbi was elected as Head of Government. Mozambique is a unitary Republic with a 250-member Parliament which is elected by universal adult suffrage every five years.

Mozambique held its first multi-party Presidential and legislative elections on 27-29 October 1994, confirming Frelimo as the winner. President Joaquim Alberto Chissano (Frelimo) was elected as President. In the elections of December 1999 President Chissano was re-elected as President. Mozambique's next elections are scheduled to be held during December 2004.

Diplomatic Representation

South African Representation in Mozambique

H E Mr M B M Mpahlwa
High Commissioner Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary

South African High Commission

Mozambican Representation in South Africa

H E Mr P J Macaringue
High Commissioner Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary

Mozambican High Commission

Travel Info

Visa Requirements for South Africans

For more information contact the Mozambican High Commission.

Health Requirements

Malaria and bilharzia are prevalent - visitors are advised to consult beforehand with their physicians in respect of appropriate medical precautions to be taken.

For further information go to Travelers' Health.

Climate Info

Tropical to subtropical

For up-to-date weather information click here

Currency Info

1 metical (Mt) = 100 centavos
2400 meticais (Mt) = ZAR 1

For current exchange rates click here

State and Official Visits / Bilateral Meetings

No Information

Bilateral Agreements

If you have any queries with regard to treaties please contact the Treaty Section at 012 351 0892/0742 or send an e-mail to:

Trade Info

For current information on trade statistics between South Africa and Mozambique, visit the web site of the Department of Trade and Industry of South Africa

Interest Groups and Information

Contact : Mr Paul da Sousa
President CCIMOSA
Tel: 092581 - 42 1892 - 5
Fax: 092581 - 42 1899



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